In the heart of Soho lies a upmarket Indian restaurant with a difference.
Ever had Indian tapas? No…didn’t think so. You’d probably put the country’s cuisine under the ‘large-filling-hearty-comfort-food’ category rather than ‘delicate-small-dishes’, but when a friend and I stumbled upon the quirky Soho joint that is Imli Street we quickly became the converted.
Imli Street is part of the Tamarind Collection group, and sister of the Michelin starred Tamarind of Mayfair. Its vibe is a bit more laid-back to that of its siblings; feeling more like a Manhattan bar than an Indian restaurant. In keeping with an uber cool Soho crowd, stone wash walls, amber mood lighting and industrial-chic exposed pipes set the scene, while chill-out music and busy chatter set the mood.
Swooning enviously at plates of joy swishing past us (rubbernecking is probably a more accurate description) we decided this looked like a good place to suppress our hunger pangs and gave each other mental high-fives. Ravenously searching the menu however, we realised we needed some assistance before ordering. Crying “HELP” our waiter came running over and happily took us through the concept and different sections – not for the first time he assured us (he might have been lying, but bless him all the same).
The menu is split into four sections:
1) Food Cart: Street-side and highway stalls that have created urban legends
2) Coastal Shack: Celebrating India’s vast coastline and her beachfronts
3) Railway Cuisine: Food makes the journey the destination
4) Beyond Boarders: Foreign influences that add to India’s eclectic cuisines.
There’s also an additional Veggie section and sides such as Naanwiches and Naan Pies, breads, rice and lentils. Dishes in each main section are around £5 to £10 pounds with sides at around £3.
Sounds good doesn’t it? Well it bloody well is.
On the recommendation of our waiter we started with a couple of the larger dishes and accompanied these with a few dishes from the Chatt Bar: Celebrating India’s most popular street cuisine. We also added Naan bread, because we could.
The food arrived, pretty promptly and gladly welcomed. I would recommend the Juhu Beach Pav Bhaji and Chandini Chowk Samosa Chaat. Simple, but very tasty. Topped off with wine and good company this place couldn’t be more fitting for a Friday night. I highly recommend trying it at least twice!
To book and view menu’s visit the Imli Street site here.
> Client Friendly: Fine for wining & dining
> Affordability: Budget-happy £
> Nearest station: Tottenham Court Road
> Dress code: Any clothes goes
> Best for: A relaxed night out
Words by – NJ
[Imagery courtesy of Imli Street]
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